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What would you do?

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    What would you do?

    ... if you'd started a new contract and its become clear that the scope of work you've been asked to deliver is very much a poisoned chalice and you're on a hiding to nothing in terms of expectations with senior stakeholders, to the point where you're beginning to think you're going to be the scapegoat?

    Very honest chat with your client to say its not what was represented in the interview and as such you think its best for both to look for someone else?

    Or just tough it out because its all billable

    #2
    1: what's the market like in your line of business and how much of a warchest do you have? Knowing your position when a contract is going south is key.

    2: difficult but take the emotion and personalities out of the situation. Try to look at everything as objectively as you can. Gather the evidence you need to illustrate the conclusion you've come to. Identify what solutions are needed. Based on #1 make sure you know what you're prepared to put up with and for how long as change could take time to implement if the client agrees with your solution. A bad contract can have serious implications for your health and wellbeing.

    3: talk to the client in a professional manner and explain the situation and your proposal for remediation. Their reaction will tell you all you need to know to proceed.

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      #3
      Originally posted by ascender View Post
      ... if you'd started a new contract and its become clear that the scope of work you've been asked to deliver is very much a poisoned chalice and you're on a hiding to nothing in terms of expectations with senior stakeholders, to the point where you're beginning to think you're going to be the scapegoat?

      Very honest chat with your client to say its not what was represented in the interview and as such you think its best for both to look for someone else?

      Or just tough it out because its all billable
      Make it a success. That's what I'd do.

      Step 1 - management of expectations. Tell them the emperor has no clothes and give them a realistic expectation. If they don't like it or disagree that's when you walk. You're not the scapegoat, just the person who told them the inevitable.
      Step 2 - make it work.
      See You Next Tuesday

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        #4
        Thanks for the posts, the point about taking emotion out of it is a very good bit of advice.

        As to health and wellbeing, I'm pretty impervious to stressful work situations, I can separate that from personal life, but I can see already people are putting in some serious hours to keep things on the road.

        Very good advice from both of you, thanks, just thought I'd get a quick reaction on here which is always good as a bit of a sanity check. And if nothing else I'm sure some of the future replies may be entertaining for us all.

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          #5
          Lance's suggestion is the TL;DR of mine

          Generally, if you've got a complaint then also have a solution to hand because no-one likes a whiner

          Comment


            #6
            Not sure what your role is, or if there will be a PM who will manage the work but I'd make sure you document everything - the scope to start with, a detailed breakdown of the work, risks and issues, dependencies etc. Basically good project management.

            Provide written reports regularly with updates to all those things and discuss in person with key stakeholders at least once a week, being entirely transparent about what is working and what might need escalating to achieve delivery.

            If they're not going to engage with that approach or assist in removing obstacles that you can't, decide how much you need the role.

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              #7
              Originally posted by ladymuck View Post
              Lance's suggestion is the TL;DR of mine

              Generally, if you've got a complaint then also have a solution to hand because no-one likes a whiner
              A good life lesson for us all. Especially my kids with whom I'll share that nugget later!

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                #8
                Originally posted by Smartie View Post
                Not sure what your role is, or if there will be a PM who will manage the work but I'd make sure you document everything - the scope to start with, a detailed breakdown of the work, risks and issues, dependencies etc. Basically good project management.

                Provide written reports regularly with updates to all those things and discuss in person with key stakeholders at least once a week, being entirely transparent about what is working and what might need escalating to achieve delivery.

                If they're not going to engage with that approach or assist in removing obstacles that you can't, decide how much you need the role.
                Yeah, that's what I'm going to do this weekend so at least I have control over my world if nothing else!

                Comment


                  #9
                  depends on a lot of factors. I've been in a similar situation in the past and I regret not getting out of it earlier.

                  if you can get similar market rate somewhere else I would just keep head down and invoice before you can do the switch. they are usually more aware of the circumstances than you think.

                  depends on how much tolerance you have, no matter how seasoned you are, the way we are connected emotionally, if you feel that you are working towards a goal that is not realistic, can't see your purpose there, you have very high chances to burn out.

                  don't expect other people to care, in my case everyone above me was looking to get their yearly bonus and they would not let a pesky project get in their way so I was their fall guy for the project.

                  make sure that you keep detailed track of the conversations and try to have engage with relevant stakeholders around the business. from their reactions and approach you will most likely learn what they want out of you.

                  if you are in an outside role or fear of litigation make sure you have done due diligence and there is no way they can raise a case against your business. it's not very common but also not unheard of.

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                    #10
                    Manage the situation and expectations and if that doesn't work consider your position. In the meantime keep invoicing.

                    Admittedly this is easy for someone external to the situation to say.

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